James Jones & Sons is a Scottish, family-owned timber processing company and while it may have a long, 180-year-old history, it also has some fresh and innovative thoughts about harvesting. James Jones strengthen the EFFORTE team with their expertise in sustainable and environmentally friendly forestry and sawmilling in the UK.

Strong cooperation between the company and research is much needed. Climate change is hitting the UK hard with instances of heavy rain and wet ground increasing substantially, which is never a good situation for forest operations. The risk of severe ground damage increases significantly when the ground remains wet for long periods.

James Jones & Sons takes its responsibilities very seriously. The business is committed to all three big international certificates – PEFC, FSC and ISO – to ensure good and environmentally friendly management of the 600,000 cubic meters of wood the company harvests and the 1.2 million tonnes of roundwood it processes every year. Participating in the various certification systems ticks a lot of boxes, but there are still many things to take into account.

“The EFFORTE project was a perfect opportunity for us to understand more about the techniques used in the damage mitigation of forest operations. We are very committed to research and development, and happy to pass the knowledge on to our harvesting managers and contractors,” says David Leslie, Director in charge of timber harvesting and wood procurement for the James Jones group.

In the UK there are strict regulations for forest operations. Site damage, visible rutting and siltation of water courses can lead to fines and prosecutions. James Jones & Sons aims to meet the highest standards within the whole wood supply chain.

“With water quality we aim to lead the industry through best practice. For example, at our Lockerbie sawmill, we treat site water with the result being that it returns to the River Annan cleaner than the water in the river itself”, Leslie explains.

The future of forestry in the UK will be interesting, but also remains challenging. The amount of harvested wood is expected to rise in the near future to meet the growing demand, but there are also continuing discussions about the protection of the environment and carbon storage.

“Now, and in the future, we will focus on the carbon footprint of the whole timber supply chain. James Jones is also planting new forest areas every year to provide sustainable future supplies,” adds Leslie.

Leslie thinks research projects like EFFORTE provide a good platform for sharing knowledge between the UK and other European countries. “We are all facing the same challenges, so close links to research institutes will hopefully provide practical solutions to difficult sites and changing conditions.”

“I think cooperation with EFFORTE gives innovative solutions not just for James Jones & Sons, but for industry as a whole in the UK and Europe!”

Learn more about James Jones & Sons from here: https://www.jamesjones.co.uk/